The use of the Brix Scale in Vineyards
Viticulturalists in California use the Brix scale to measure the sugar content in grapes. Monitoring sugar content during grape maturation allows vineyard managers to efficiently manage their harvest teams.
The Brix scale gives an objective number that vineyard managers use to evaluate vineyard conditions. This measure is critical for both dry and sweet wine production. Other countries use different methods and scales to measure sugar levels.
The Brix scale measures the percentage of sugar in grapes by weight. This is measured by refractometry and is expressed in degrees Brix. At 25 degrees Brix, the grape has approximately 25 grams sugar per 100 grams liquid.
Each vineyard block has an optimum sugar level for harvest. This is dependent on a multitude of factors, but is generally between 19 and 25 degrees Brix. Sugar concentration is just one of the factors that vineyard managers must evaluate in determining proper harvest time, and contributes to the complexity of this process.
> Related Articles